Blog + Facebook

My Blog:

http://kayakguideblog.wordpress.com – NEW

blog.kayakguide.co.uk – OLD

Facebook: https://facebook.com/kayakguide

Winter 2012…. so far

The second half of December has been great, nearly good flows every day! I managed to paddle 21 days on 27 river trips, hit up new rivers and different sections nearly everyday…

I started off by competing in the down river race at Pots Rodoe and Finished 3rd in Expert mens!

After a quick bite to eat, myself and friend also fellow Zet team member, Nick Pearce judged the Pots Rodeo

Prize giving and a great party followed. Well done to Exeter Uni for another great event…

Adventure Paddlers Weekend came next, paddlers come from all over gather for a weekend of boating and party antics at RDCP, organsied by Simon Westgarth of Gene17.

Paddling on The Upper Dart followed for hangover cure!

Myself on the Rock spin move

Myself Drew and Dom headed to Republic of Ireland for a long weekend, but unfortunalty the rain turned to ice and we didnt get much paddling, but did get to Party hard in Killarney for 3 nights!!!

Ireland Dry Tour!! – The video

On the lead up to Christmas we had so much rain it was unbelievable!! We did laps of Upper Upper Plym, Lower Plym, Upper Tavy, Upper Dart, West Dart, East Dart, Loop, Erme, East Okement and East Lyn to name most.

Christmas 2012 – Video action

We are now into 2013- Happy new year to all!! The weather has gone cold and it has snowed – Time for some rest and to catch up at home..

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River Cleans November 2012 – Dart + Tavy

So it was time to organsise the annual River Clean.

Photo: David Johnson

Like the first year we were going to cover The River Dart, from Dartmeet down and as the event is growing we decided to add a second river, The River Tavy, from Tavistock down.We collected some strange item of rubbish!                                   Photo: Buck

So using my   Kayaking on The Dart Facebook Group and Simon Westgarth’s The Rivers Source Gene17 event we organised people to the rivers on Sunday 11th November.

A massive thank you to Dave Smith and Brian “buck” Taylor for the organisation skills on the River Tavy.

  The team on The Dart                                                                     Photo: Matt Corke

Some great paddling along the way

Mark Allen (me) on “The Boof Line”                                                              Phot: David Johnson

We collected 80kg on the Dart and a massive 200kg on the Tavy! A great effort and a good day out was had by all.

The Rubbish from The Dart                                                                          Photo: Mark Allen

We even made the BBC news, hear is the video of the BBC News Report

A couple of Radio interviews and several reports in the local papers.

A great event and next year we will grow – add more people and more rivers and again we will run along side Gene17 River Source Weekend at The River Dart Country Park

The upcoming website that we are building will be: www.rivercleanuk.co.uk

Spring and Sumer 2012

Sorry for the lack of updates in the last few months. I have been super busy and been a bit slack on the social networking front.

So winter finished well, Dartmoor had water in March so we paddled lots!!

April came and we headed to the Pyrenees, we had mixed water levels but in general we had a great time but fell the Spanish side is slightly better.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tw8Kx7YAqZU&feature=g-upl – The video from the trip.

On Return to Dartmoor, we had loads of water for a week or two so had some great times…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3SY6hLOhiu8&feature=channel&list=UL – Erme and Dart, High flows.

Next was time to Fly to Italy and return for the 3rd year in a row to Campertogno, Valsesia – The perfect spring destination. I love this place and will be returning next year!!!

Liam and Tom chilling in Campertogno.

Our Basic sleeping arrangements….

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LKBqNtFaOLY&feature=channel&list=UL – The video…

Home again for a few weeks before off to The Trywern Festival, for Zet Kayaks Uk.

The weather was wet so we were luck with high water Run on the Nauntgyurad on the Friday evening and Upper Mawdach early Satuarday morning. A great weekend and a dam good party…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bPVqXsmaNKs&feature=channel&list=UL  –  A few bits from the Mawdach until the battery died…

A couple of weeks rest and our voyage to Norway was here!!!

We left Exeter, Picked up friends and the Van in Bristol and on Route to Harwich for our first ferry, an overnighter with expensive beer saw us land in denmark, a quick drive to the top of the country took us to the 2nd ferry all the way to Larvic, Norway,  6 hours drive later we arrived at Sjoa fun run. Levels were high and rising…

We had a run on the fun run before moving on to Lom and the Lower Bovra, Lower Skiyli, Otto onto the great bivvy site on The Ulava standard. Next on to the Hardest and best river on the trip, The Jora – This river looked high but looking at the gauge its was still on!!! – We later found out that it was about 3m over the correct gauge – No wonder it was a hard and continuous run!!!

The Jora camp.

A short ferry and playing in the snow on the journey from Lom to Valdall.

The Water contined to be high, so back to the Sjoa Kayak Camp for the Gene17 Festival – and what a good time we had there… Ula, Store Ula, Sjoa sections, Pimp and Ho party the BBQ party – A truley great destination.

Next year I am hoping for slightly less water as things were fairly large!!!

The video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TF2bR_1V9Fo&feature=channel&list=UL

This Autum / Winter brings us to Uk boating – The WWPF in September, The Canoe Show in Exeter, The Litter pick on Sunday 11th November running along side The River Source and of Course the Gene17 APWE in December – Good times ahead…

Mark Allen

River Dart facebook group

Kayaking on The Dart Facebook Group

A very popular and usefull page/group

Zet Kayaks – Sponsorship

I am pleased to be able to announce that I am now part of Team Zet UK and currantly firing it up in The Zet Raptor!!!

The Raptor is very fast and I am liking it alot – Photos to follow!!

http://www.zet-kayaks.co.uk/

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Pyrhana Fest 2011

Team Kayaks and Paddles headed to Bala in North Wales for the 2011 Pyrhana Fest.

Photos by Tom Layland

Plenty of Beer, Parting and runs on the Trywern were had.

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WWPF 2011

WWPF 2011 – The Video, Click link!!

Never been to a WWPF before so this year with a few days to spare, I headed to Scotland with my friends from Devon.

We had high water and hit 7 rivers in 4 days.

Alt Fallan

Nevis Waterfall

Nevis Waterfall

A great time was had with good mates.

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French Alps 2011

Room with a view!

Room with a view!

So we had a great time in Italy, so after a couple weeks back, we headed back to Europe, this time to the French Alps. The weather was lovely, 30′c most days.

We spent a week paddling all of the classic, including the Guil, Durance, Gyr, Onde, Gyronde, Gusaine etc.

Mark & Matt discussing the finer things in Life!

Beer with the boys after our fine high water run on the Gyr.

Staircase rapid on the Middle Guil

A good week was had and we will return soon.

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19
JUN

Italy 2011

So its the time of year we head to Val Sesia – and again we all loved it!

Mark Allen in his New Palm Kit

We sent a week in the region paddling the Classics including Egua, Seminzina, Sesia Alpine Sprint, Middle and Lower, Sermenza Gorge, Gronda and Sorba Slides.

Mikey C

Liam K

The day generally started with:

Mark Allen – Relaxing before a good day on the water!!

Then some boating

Mark Allen nailing a big boof on the Seminzina

Then some partys with the crazy Irish!

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19
MAR

Surf’s Up

With the lack of wet stuff, We decieded it was time to head to Widemouth Bay. The Surf today was 3-4 and clean, hot and sunny weather. The new Dagger Axiom surf’s a treat. Will add some photos and more words as and when. With Italy and France quickly approaching I will be in a boat as much as possible to remain paddle fit, ready for the steep’s of Val Sesia

Sponsorship – Kayaks & Paddles!!

Just a quick update to let you all know that I am now sponsored by KAYAKS & PADDLES in Plymouth.

http://www.kayaksandpaddles.co.uk/

When you need new kayaking gear, please give these guys a call – they will sort you out.

Cheers

Mark Allen

KAYAKS & PADDLES UK

This year –  see me heading off to Val Sesia in May and The French Alps in June.

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23
JAN

Dartmoor January 2011

Since returning from Portugal, the rivers have been filled and I have enjoyed about 30 trips on the Upper Dart, East Okement, Erme, Tavy, West Dart. Been a great month, lets hope the rain returns soon!!!

Super Boof on Upper Dart.  – Paddler Mark Allen – Photos by Simon Westgarth GENE17

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23
JAN

Portugal

So then,with Christmas out of the way and a very cold December passing it was time to head to Portugal!

Planning on the ferry – Photo by Pete Anderson

After a long ferry ride and a 7 hour drive we arrived at our warm up river. The Minho. 10km of class 2-3.

Mike Moxon surfing the wave at the start – photo by Amy Elsworthy

After this river we found overnight accommodation in Arcos De Valdevez, very old fashioned but good enough for us.

The following morning founds us checking the Rio Vez out, only to find it too low. So after a quick chat the team headed off to the Mouro, 8km of class 4.

Drew on the Mouro – Photo Pete Anderson

The Following day after another night in basic accommodation we headed off to the Tamega section 4. The Guide book was fairly wrong about this section.  Was meant to be 7km of class 4 through an intense gorge – It was actually 6 km of class 2, with a rapid of 3 another of 4 and to finish a big volume class 5 rapid.

Photo – Amy Elsworthy

As it was Newyears Eve, everywhere was shut so we ended up camping on the side of a road – It was great, at midnight the surrounding valleys light up with fireworks.

Photo Amy Elsworthy

Newyears Day 2011! – We had received word from a local paddler that the Classic Cavado was on so we hit it – and boy it was good!!!

The Cavado is 4 km of class 4-5. The Start and end bits were a bit chossy but the middle section – the bit that you come to paddle is ace. Lots of slab, slide and Waterfalls. The rock was a fabulous white smooth granite.

Me on one of the many slides. Photo Mike Moxon

This style of  things continued for what like felt for ever. Every slide was different, Wall rides, narrow slabs, a 6m waterfall (that we portaged) lots and lots of fun. Then we came to this:

Me on the final drop. Photo Mike Moxon

This river will always be remembered by me, it was great!!

After a totally exhilarating day we found a nice spot to camp, had a bbq and lots of wine and beer…

Photo Amy Elsworthy

Next was back to the Tamega this time section 1. 8km of big volume class 4 (5)

Pete Anderson – Photo by Amy Elsworthy

We headed off towards the border and stayed in a hostel in Spain a few miles from the Castro Laboreiro.

After an interesting meal of cabbage soup and a very cold night sleep we head off to the last river the Castro Laboreiro section 1. 7km of class 4-5 with several portages.

Photo by Mike Moxon

An interesting finish to the trip. The guide book states not to do this river in high water. As soon as the team put on the heavens opened and the river rose 3 feet in 45 mins. So an epic walk out was had.

A great trip was had by all.

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22
NOV

Portugal – coming soon

Just a quick update to let you all know that www.kayakguide.co.uk are off to Northen Portugal – Creeking for Newyears.

A full trip report with video and photos to follow!!!

The UK white water season is well underway and so far we have had good levels!!! Lets hope it continues….

See you all soon.

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6
JUN

Val Sesia and Tessin 2010

We are just back after a two and a bit week creeking  in Italy and Switzerland!!! A good time was had by all.

We left Devon on a sunny after noon on the start of our long drive to Italy, Good time was made and managed to catch an earlier ferry.

Liam k and Tim A waiting at Dover

So 17 hours after we had left we arrived at our first destination – Campertongno. We set camp in the lovely site, met a few friends who where already there and headed to the Gronda and Sorba for a warm up!

Mark S enjoying the last drop on the Gronda.

We paddled down river and hit the Sorba Slides

Tim A on first Sorba Slide

Mark H on 2nd Sorba Slide

After a good session there, we headed back to meet the rest of the gang and have a few beers and some great food from the onsite restaurant. The rest of the evening became a little blurey!

We woke in the morning to wall to wall sunsine, in a stunning mountain location.

After a light breakfast and a walk to the local shop, we decided that we should fire up the serious but fun class 5 Egua. We packed the various cars andset off. On arrival we found the river to be a perfect medium level. Happy days were upon us!

Mark A on the Top Drop of the Egua

Mark A landing the Top Drop on Egua

Good fun was had on the Top drop, people running the drop 2 or 3 time each. We head off down the lovely river, only 1 km long but very steep and continuous.

Mark A on the Egua.

Lack of pictures in the second half of the Egua as it gets even steeper and we were all forgot to take photos!!!

The Egua finishes at a foot bridge with the famous Cylinder drop below it!!!

Mark S cleaning the boof on the Cylinder drop Egua.

A great day was hard by all!!!

Back at the camp for more beers/wine and food.

The next day we headed for the Lower Masterlone, a great river in a lovely mountain valley.

The end of the gorge.

After the fine run on Mastolone we drove 30 mins up the valley to find the park and huck waterfall Landwaser. It was super clean and alot of fun was had by all.

Mark A hucking Landwasser falls

We again ( you may see the pattern) headed back for beer and food

Arthur N and Mark S chilling in the bar

The following day we decided that we would go to the Gronda Race Course for a chilled out day, although some walked about 3km above the Race Course for a 30 foot drop and 3km of steep and rocky class 4 and 5.

Matt L on the Race Course

Mark A on the Race Course

The next few days were spent paddling all the classics of the Region.

After 7 days the team headed over the boarder in to Switzerland for a nights wild camping and to run the Ribo Waterfall.

The Camp at the Ribo

Ribo fall is a clean 12m waterfall

Mark S running the Ribo falls

After the Ribo our group split. Some stayed in Tessin for the rest of the holiday, while myself and my car passengers head back to campertongo to meet other friends and spend the remaining time running rivers and sections that we had not yet run.

On returning to Campertongno I decieded that I had, had enough of camping so moved into the very nice wooden house for the rest of my stay. It was very nice, offering all modern day facilities.

My lush house

The next few days were spent boating on the Sorba, Gronda, Sesia, Egua, Seminzina and Landwasser, we met some cool people there and have made some new friends.

We all enjoyed the trip and are looking forward to the next one!!!

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14
MAY

Italy and Switzerland 2010 pre-view

A quick post to tell you all that myself and a few friends will be leaving for Val Sesia and Tincio on Thursday!!! When I return in June I will post a report and some photos!!!

I will still recieved all emails and facebook stuff while away – so if people want to enquire or book any course they can!!!

See you all in a few weeks!!!

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27
APR

Cardiff WW Centre

We have been to Cardiff’s new WW Centre for the last few weekends and it rocks!!!

It is an ideal training ground, class 3 – 3+ ww, really fast, with good eddies, waves and holes to play and sharpen up on.

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27
APR

April 2010 – Welcome to www.kayakguide.co.uk

Welcome to the all new www.kayakguide.co.uk We offer BCU coaching, courses, guiding and trips to the French Alps. iIf you dont see what you are looking for, please get in touch and I will see what I can do!
Will be updating the site and blog frequently.
NEW LOGO/STICKER

The new company Logo and Sticker designed by Ross Wildman at Fluid Creations. If you would like a sticker contact me with your address.

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